The British Flat Union Flag Shoe
19 Oct 2013
The British Flat Union Flag Shoe!
From the onset of the business I have had repeated requests for a ballerina shoe in the design of my logo. I knew what I was looking for with the design and rejected ideas of a shoe made out of Union Flag material and also rejected the idea of an embroidered or painted flag, it’s been done and I wanted something a bit different, a bit more special.
The shoe itself had to be of the same comfort and exacting standards of a ‘British Flat Shoe’ and the flag itself had to be the right way up, show all the relevant slim and wide white parts of the flag. (There are oodles and oodles of union flags on products which are the wrong way up, have the wrong wide parts in the wrong place.) Given that this is a British made product and is also, not only depicting the Union Flag but is also The British Flat Shoe logo, this had to be done right.
The idea of layering out of leather strips the various parts of the flag was a design I was aiming for.
Creating the flag took some time as a generic template had to be made which, not only created the flag across a size but would also suffice for a size 9. Using too much leather on the front of the shoe would make the whole thing too bulky. Working with the factory we created the template of the flag. By laying the template over the leather and using a stich marker we could then mark up the leather to begin making the flag itself. A prototype shoe made from white binding tape which forms the white background and then strips of patent red leather were applied over the top by hand to finish the flag, the only piece is then machined into place by hand.
To see the process in action. Click on the following You Tube Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ClVR6cZxE5Y
An interesting comment was posted by Kate Hills from http://www.makeitbritish.co.uk/ on my Twitter account which is @Britishflatshoe who said and I quote ‘Great to see a Union Jack design that’s actually made in Great Britain.’
I think she was referring to the amount of Union Jack merchandising which comes in from abroad – hence why the flag is usually upside down or displayed with the white bits in the wrong sequence.